Friday, July 11, 2008

"No Vacancy Left Behind" Continues

The lazy, hazy days might be having their way with us all... but with no dearth of things to keep tabs on -- and, really, is there ever one? -- let's start with everyone's favorite.

If there's any thought out there that three appointments on these shores this week alone didn't suffice, good news -- there is, indeed, more to come. Signaling a curial push to clear out as much buildup as possible on the Stateside docket before the Vatican's traditional summer exodus, another nod or two is expected to fall in the coming days.

For one, the top brass of the nation's longest-vacant diocese -- Minnesota's 70,000-member diocese of New Ulm -- have been summoned to appear in full-dress for a "mandatory" Monday morning meeting.

Now, with Pope resting up (at, of all places, an Opus Dei retreat center) in Australia by that point, suffice it to say the only other reason to get out the finery and call a command performance in the dead of July is....


Located 100 miles from the Twin Cities, early signs point to a bishop-elect with an easy commute; the exurban church's wait for its fourth head began in late April 2007, when then-Bishop John Nienstedt was named coadjutor-archbishop of St Paul and Minneapolis.

Once the news makes its formal arrival, the standard process-length for a US appointment over most of this decade (i.e. two years or more) will have been slashed in half... in just over three months' time. No mean accomplishment, that.